Environment and Rural Development Program

Target Groups Peoples’ Organizations (POs), technical personnel in Government Agencies
and Local Government Units (LGUs)
Location Leyte, Negros, Panay Islands
Duration July 2005 to June 2014
Donors German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Protection and Nuclear Safety (BMU)


Forests used to be one of the richest natural resources in the Visayas. Barely 60 years ago, more than 40 % of the islands’ land surface was covered with forests. Now, only 10 to 15 % remains and even less than 3 % in some islands. The decline in forest cover goes along with a significant loss of biodiversity, raw materials and green house gases. It causes soil degradation, erosion, flash floods, irregular water supply, and hence endangers the living conditions of the fast growing population.

In response to this problem, the Government of the Philippines initiated the Community-Based Forest Management (CBFM) Strategy. Sustainable CBFM implies on the one hand that People’s Organizations (POs) and indigenous peoples assume responsibility in managing CBFM areas; on the other hand that the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), local government units (LGUs) and non-government organizations (NGOs) cooperate in providing well-coordinated services to forestland managers and POs.


The Community-Based Forest Management (CBFM) component of EnRD seeks to sustainably improve CBFM by supporting these different actors in assuming their tasks.


EnRD supports the creation of provincial and municipal technical working groups and the issuance of tenurial instruments such as CBFM agreements, forest resource inventories and forest land use plans (FLUP). It supports the DENR and LGUs in the preparation and implementation of community resource management frameworks (CRMF) In addition, the Program provides assistance to LGUs and POs.

In Leyte, Panay and Negros Islands, EnRD supports 47 local governments to establish Municipal / City Environment and Natural Resources Offices with staff and regular budget, prepare Forest Land Use Plans, enter Co-Management Agreements with the DENR to responsibly manage their forest resources, to issue municipal ordinances to manage and protect the forests and employ forest guards. In addition, 20 POs have been assisted to obtain security of tenure and to prepare and implement forest management plans.

All in all, the EnRD intends to reforest and rehabilitate 5, 800 ha degraded forest lands (4,935 ha with BMZ and 865 ha with BMU support), to establish 4,680 ha of agro-forestry areas (3,850 ha through BMZ and 830 ha through BMU assistance) and bring 60,000 natural forests under sustainable management (10,000 ha with BMZ and 50,000 ha with BMU support). In addition, the EnRD in cooperation with KfW (German Development Bank) assists the establishment of 9,840 ha forest and agroforestry plantations under the Community-Based Forest Manageent Mangrove Project. These measures will bring benefits to more than 10,000 farm families.

EnRD also contributes to policy dialogue at the national level and collaborates with other donor agencies on policy amendments related to forestry.

Results achieved so far:


  • Forest land use planning and co-management of forest resources
    • 15 Co-Management Agreements between DENR and Local Governments have been signed, preparing the ground for bringing over 150,000 ha of open-access forests under sustainable management
    • 15 municipalities prepared Forest Land Use Plans (FLUP), another 20 partner municipalities have started with the forest land use planning process
    • 35 partner municipalities established a Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office (MENRO) and have a regular staff and budget for forest management
  • Forest management and income generation
    • Over 50,000 ha of open-access forest are already being protected and properly co-managed by DENR and local governments
    • 1,260 households of 18 People's Organizations have received long-term tenurial rights for a catchment area of 15,300 ha of forest land
    • Financing agreements to reforest / rehabilitate 5,800 ha of degraded forest land and establish 4,680 of agro-forestry areas have been concluded amounting to PhP173.6 million, of which 2,890 ha of forests and 1,855 ha of agro-forestry plantations have been established
    • Four Public-Private-Partnerships (PPP) have been established in the coconut, coffee and cacao sector, to stimulate high-value crop establishment and income generation
  • Replication of approaches
    • The Provincial Government of IloIlo and Negros Oriental have officially declared to extend the Forest Land Use Planning to all its municipalities by using their own resources upon advice and training from EnRD.


To learn more about our work, approaches and results, please check also our publications





The Environment and Rural Development (EnRD) Program is a joint initiative between the Philippine and the German Government. EnRD is implemented
by the Department of Agriculture (DA), Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)
and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.

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